December 6, 2018 / 5:39 PM / a year ago

Madison Square Garden CEO to settle U.S. securities charges

FILE PHOTO: New York Knicks owner James Dolan speaks during a news conference announcing Knicks interim head coach Mike Woodson will be taking over the team from head coach Mike D'Antoni, who mutually agreed to part ways with the team before their NBA basketball game against the Portland Trail Blazers, at Madison Square Garden in New York, March 14, 2012. REUTERS/Adam Hunger

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The chief executive of the Madison Square Garden Co (MSG.N), owner of the New York Knicks and New York Rangers sports teams, has agreed to pay nearly $610,000 to resolve U.S. securities violations that he said stemmed from a law firm error.

James Dolan, who also serves as executive chairman, failed “to report in a timely manner his acquisition of voting securities,” the Federal Trade Commission said in a statement on Thursday, adding that it “was not Dolan’s first ... filing violation.”

The FTC said Dolan did not notify the agency and the U.S. Department of Justice in a timely manner when his securities reached a certain dollar amount threshold and did not observe a required waiting period.

In a statement, the company said Dolan had relied on the law firm Debevoise & Plimpton to handle the filings. The firm had “inadvertently missed” the filing deadline for a second time, triggering the fine, but agreed to pay the fine because of its mistake, the company added.

The settlement must be approved by a federal court in Washington after a 60-day comment period, regulators said.

Madison Square Garden Co also owns its namesake venue in Midtown Manhattan, the New York Liberty basketball team, Radio City Music Hall and its Radio City Rockettes.

Shares of the company were up less than 1 percent in early afternoon trading.

Reporting by Susan Heavey; editing by Mohammad Zargham and Steve Orlofsky

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